I was really nervous when it came time to starting Jayden on solids. Everything I read made it seem so complicated. I was saving up for one of those fancy baby food machines like the Beaba Babycook.
But then I decided to just give it a try with the steamer we already own and our food processor. It worked fine! There really is no need to throw away money. If you have a way to steam food and some kind of blender or food processor, that's all you need.
So, for others like me, I decided to do a post all about how I did it. It was so much easier than I thought it would be. The time period of them eating purees is so short anyway. It would be silly to buy something fancy.
We started with sweet potatoes. I baked them in the toaster oven, then cut them in half, scooped the flesh out of the skin with a spoon, put it in the food processor, blended it well, then spooned it into an ice cube tray. I put the icecube tray in the freezer over night and then popped the cubes out into labeled freezer bags.
I did the icecube tray thing with most of the purees. It makes it really easy to grab a cube or two out of the freezer whenever I want and then just heat them up.
I did butternut squash the exact same way as sweet potatoes.
I used the crock pot to make the apples, just like I do when I make apple sauce for us.
I try to buy all organic fruits and vegetables for Jayden.
I peeled the apples, then cut them into chunks and threw them in the crock pot. Hours later they were done and house smelled awesome. I used a submersion blender to puree them into a smoother consistency.
I used our steamer to cook a head of broccoli. Then pureed it in the food processor, spooned it into the ice cube tray, froze it, popped the cubes out into a labeled freezer bag.
Submersion blender to puree.
I added some cinnamin, which Jayden loves, and it smells so good everytime I heat up cubes of pears!
I bought a bag of organic frozen peas, cooked them in a pot with water, then pureed them using the submersion blender.
Boy, oh boy, mangoes are a pain to cut up! It took forever to peel and cut five mangoes. I added the chunks to the food processor, pureed them, then spooned it into the ice cube tray. The best part is that I've shared them with Jayden. I've grabbed a cube or two and added them to smoothies! YUM.
I put the carrots in the steamer, pureed them, then froze them in the icecube tray.
Jayden loves a mix of carrots and apples.
I know some people are worried about nitrates found in carrots, click here for more information about why you don't need to be concerned. Our pediatrician confirmed there is no need to worry. All of the carrots I have served Jayden are certified organic.
Bananas have always been a 'make on the spot' food since you can't really freeze banana puree. For a while I would open a banana and then mash it up in a bowl with a fork. Now I just let him take his own bites from it and chew it. Even before he got his two little front bottom teeth, he was able to take a good bite. I just watch carefully that he doesn't bite off too much.
Avocado is another food you can't freeze. I just cut it open, mash it up, and feed it to him. Last time he had it, I mashed it with banana and he seemed to really like that.
WATERMELON AND CANTALOUPE
Rather than puree these, I just gave him big chunks to hold and chew on. I think the cantaloupe was particularly enjoyable while he was teething.
I buy him the Yo Baby organic yogurt. He has liked all the flavors he has tried.
BIBS, BOWLS, and SPOONS
My favorite bib is the baby bjorn one pictured below. Jayden will play with all the other ones and crinkle them up into his face, which gets food all over the bib and then all over his hands and clothes. This one is impossible to crinkle up and the most he can do is lift it up and then drop it again. It's also very easy to clean.
Let me make it clear- I am not receiving anything for my opinions here. These are just what we used and liked so I wanted to share.
Now that he is getting older we are starting to add some protein like pureed white beans and sweet potatoes. And tofu and bananas.
Whenever possible, I give Jayden bites of whatever we are eating. Sometimes I have to modify things, but he is getting really good at biting and chewing. It's funny I worried so much about making purees because it's really a short period of time. He's moving more and more to just eating what we eat.
If you make too much of any of your purees, you can find way to use them for yourself. I grab fruit cubes to add to smoothies all the time. And almost any vegetable cube can be added to something like pasta sauce to get some extra veggies in.
GOOD LUCK and HAVE FUN :)
If I was giving myself from two months ago some advice, I would tell myself not to worry so much about doing it the wrong or right way. Just feed him good foods and have fun with it. The faces are priceless. Anything you put in Jayden's mouth is met with a "what the hell are you doing to me?!" look. Then I smile, which makes him smile, and then he decides he loves whatever it is.
Oh, and don't forget to take lots of cute food all over the face pictures :)